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Coaching Roundtable
How Much Does On-Court Body Language Factor Into Recruiting?

Slumped shoulders. Fist pumps. Bad language. Good sportsmanship.

How much does a player’s body language on the court factor into recruiting?

We asked several coaches from around the country for this month’s Coaching Roundtable:

Brett Masi, USC men

“As a coach when it comes to recruiting, I definitely take in all aspects of the player’s game. With regards to their body language and attitude, it’s something that I watch for sure. But as far as negativity goes, I would look more at if they are extremely temperamental all the time or over the top with negativity with yelling and screaming. At the same time, I’m looking for the players that are ultra-competitive so you have to take that into account. If they are negative or down because a couple of things don’t go their way but most of the time they are super positive and trying to get themselves pumped up, then I wouldn’t hold that against them. I’m a very passionate coach myself so I like players that play with that fire and passion as well. But definitely, if they are always negative and down on themselves or yelling at the refs, that can be a big turn off.”

Catrina Thompson, Minnesota women

“Observation of character traits is part of the recruiting process. A coach must consider not only athletic abilities, athletic and academic accomplishments of a recruit but also the character traits. A coach and her/his team will be together for two to four years and must get along and work together as a family. A coach must consider whether the recruit will respect coaches and fellow teammates and make the university proud of the student - athlete both on and off the court. When recruiting, a coach looks carefully at the work ethic, discipline, body language and honesty of the recruit while watching the recruit play and also during campus and home visits. When you get to college you are now playing for something greater than yourself and need to have a team-first mentality. Personally, attitude and body language are two big factors that play significant roles into the recruitment of our future student-athletes at the University of Minnesota. We want to not only recruit highly ranked players but also girls with good character and players that will fit in with the culture of our team.”

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Page updated on Thursday, March 04, 2021
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